The Spy Game

The Spy Game

My dirty little secret used to be that I snooped. I felt compelled to verify that I wasn’t just imagining things – my daughter really was using drugs. I had this battle within myself, and I needed something to help me decide which way to turn. One part of me desperately wanted to believe that I was worrying over nothing – that this was just normal, young adult behavior and that my daughter was just doing the same as what I had done. But there was this 6th sense too – that part of me that knew deep down that this was not the same and that this was something to be afraid of. Knowing which instinct to follow seemed to require evidence.

And so I fell into the Spy Game Trap. I became increasingly obsessive, intrusive and conniving about how to find out what was really going on. I would watch for opportunities to retrieve my daughter’s phone when she fell asleep so that I could read her text messages and look at her activity on social media. I searched her room, her bookbag and her car. I installed GPS devices so that I could follow her every movement around town. I became obsessed with collecting evidence.

At some point, I realized that my obsession was making ME crazy. I knew the answer to the evidence question. I knew that we had a serious problem, and my own search for evidence did nothing to change that. I stopped engaging in the Spy Game and made a commitment to my daughter and myself that I will respect her privacy and encourage her to come to me when she’s ready to get some help for her drug addiction.

Today’s Reminder:  When I obsess and engage in the compulsive pursuit of evidence to confirm drug use, I accomplish nothing except for feeding MY addiction to trying to control my daughter’s using. I will model for my daughter that I can change my own thinking and behavior with the help of others by abstaining from the Spy Game.


You can listen to an audio of this devotional at our podcast A Dose of Hope.


You do not have to walk this path alone. Parenting Through Addiction offers courses to teach you about what YOU can do to help your child as they begin their own path to recovery. We also offer various membership options so you can connect with other parents who are on their own journey to find serenity in the face of their child’s addiction. To learn more click here!